WHO Loves Ya Baby (Unless You Are A Smoker)

The WHO (not the musical group but the health organization) has taken a stance against smoking. They have a new policy that they will not hire people who smoke or use other forms of tobacco.

Its job advertisements now carry the statement “WHO has a smoke-free environment and does not recruit smokers or other tobacco users”. Applicants will be asked if they are smokers and if so, if they would continue to smoke if employed by the WHO.

Everyone will agree that smoking is a disgusting habit that is involved in the deaths of millions of people each year. It is also true that smoking is a legal practice that is sanctioned by every State in the Union and in most countries. Smoking products are sold, and heavily taxed, by just about every country on the face of the Earth. How is it that the WHO can decide that it will discriminate against people who are engaging in a legal practice? If they want to make a rule that workers are not allowed to smoke at work and that smoking areas will not be provided they are entitled to do that. To deny someone a job for engaging in a legal practice is over the line.

Many people who are opposed to smoking (and I do not support it) will applaud this and say it is for the good of the workers. I say poppycock. It is not the employer’s place to decide what activities employees may engage in (so long as they are legal) when they are not at work. WHO states that they are promoting their public health campaign.

What next? Obesity kills many people and there are a number of illnesses associated with being overweight. Will WHO decide next that it will not hire anyone who is overweight? How about workers with HIV? Will WHO start asking applicants if they have HIV? Will they refuse to hire them because they are more prone to illness secondary to a compromised immune system? Will they determine that HIV infected people are a danger to the health of others because if they get cut they could spread disease? Maybe WHO will next determine that people who drink alcohol are unhealthy and should not be hired. Perhaps they will not hire people who drive cars that do not do well on crash tests. After all, they can’t have their workers dying in accidents.

WHO is making a bad policy. They are discriminating against people who are doing nothing illegal. Granted, smoking is not the smartest choice a person can make but denying them employment is an illegal act that needs to be stopped.

As if I needed another reason to hate the UN, the WHO is a United Nations Agency.

Read it here.

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One Response to “WHO Loves Ya Baby (Unless You Are A Smoker)”

  1. Jo says:

    I just now saw this story on Fox News — and although I’m a smoker, I understand WHO’s reasoning — HOWEVER … they need to make sure that no unhealthy habits are being done by their employees at all — no matter what. If they eat potato chips FIRE ‘EM. If they are a diabetic FIRE ‘EM (I mean a lot of people believe diabetics bring it on themselves). If they go out partying on the weekends FIRE ‘EM — it’s unhealthy .. it’s something that will be taken too far .. but I know one hospital in town here that requires their employees to sign an agreement not to smoke .. ever. Hmmm